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Luke Campbell, age 33, announces retirement from the fighting life

30
Jul

Luke Campbell has called it a career.

The 2012 Olympic gold medalist announced his retirement on social media Friday morning following an eight-year career that saw him fall short of becoming a world champion on two occasions.

Campbell, fighting out of Hull, East Yorkshire, England, lost a split decision to WBA lightweight champion Jorge Linares in 2017 after recovering from a second-round knockdown. The fighter was dropped and eventually outpointed in his second and final title shot by then-unified lightweight titleholder Vasiliy Lomachenko in August 2019 at The O2 Arena in London.

A 2017 win at Wembley over Darleys Perez in support of AJ v Wladimir Klitschko will stand as a career highlight.

At the time of his retirement, the 33-year-old Campbell (20-4, 16 KOs) was The Ring’s No. 5 ranked lightweight. In his final bout, the skillful southpaw dropped rising star and Ring No. 2 ranked 135-pounder Ryan Garcia with a big left hand in the second round. However, Garcia rebounded quickly and knocked out Campbell with a left hook to the body in the seventh frame.

While he never won a world title, his gold medal at the 2012 Games will forever remain in the history books. He was also an Olympic teammate to current unified heavyweight titleholder Anthony Joshua.

Campbell said: “Every fight, right the way from my debut on 13th June 2013, up to my last on 2nd January 2021, the cheers and messages of encouragement have always been monumental. Throughout my career I’ve tried to test myself against the very best in the industry and never shied away from anyone. I’m so grateful this hasn’t gone unnoticed from supporters and I appreciate you all.

“The past year in boxing though has been tough,” wrote the classy craftsman nicknamed ‘Coolhand Luke.’ “An extremely long training camp away from family meant I was only able to spend a few days with my newborn child and also resulted in me having Christmas apart from them on the other side of the world. It’s in these moments that you realise what is truly important in life. I’ve lived my dreams and accomplished more than I ever imagined I would. In the same way that my dad was able to witness my greatest achievements, I want to be able to do that for my children and make sure I’m always there to see their biggest triumphs.”

Luke and his dad Bernard. The athlete realized during peak pandemic the true import of family and made the move to ensure he’s there to see his three sons grow up.

The pugilist is highly regarded for his skills, his service to the sport, and solid character. Campbell received an MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire) in 2013, indicating his standing in his nation of origin.

“Boxing has been a part of who I am since the age of 13 and I would not have been able to reach half the heights I have without the incredible support of my wife Lyndsey, who has been with me every step and every punch of the way,” Campbell wrote in his farewell post. “I cannot wait to spend more time with you and our three beautiful boys.”

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